March 2024 - NOW CLOSED - Thank you to all of our customers.

Bitter chocolate, does dark chocolate have to be bitter?

We’re on a mission to showcase how incredible dark chocolate can really be! Fine dark chocolate is like fine wine and coffee in the sense that there’s a lot of complexity in different chocolates and flavours are impacted by the region of origin (as well as many other things during the making of).

So much dark chocolate available on the high street and big name brands is often bitter and lacks flavour. And there’s a reason behind this.

Almost all cocoa used in commercial chocolate is sourced from Ivory Coast and Ghana. Where cocoa is grown by over an estimated 1 million small hold cocoa farmers. This cocoa is then collected on mass and sold to giant chocolate makers, all mixed up from all the farmers, which makes traceability very hard to monitor. There will be a wide range of quality in the mix of cocoa, from not great to average to good quality. 

When big chocolate manufactures get these beans they need the final product to be uniform in flavour and taste. So they roast their cocoa at very high temperatures, to almost over roasted. And this is what causes so much dark chocolate to be bitter. Over roasted cocoa beans. It’s a bit like this in the coffee industry too, like how Starbucks will roast their beans very hot, again almost over roasted, so all the flavour is uniform.

This over roasting easily solves the problem of mixed quality cocoa beans! Also, so much commercial dark chocolate will have vanilla, or vanilla flavouring (artificial stuff) added to it to give it some sort of flavour.

When dark chocolate is made well, with great beans roasted to honour the flavour and hard work that’s gone into growing them, you don’t need to add vanilla. Almost all bean to bar and craft chocolate makes will not add vanilla to their dark chocolate because it’s not needed! (Unless they are making a specific vanilla flavoured bar)

We don’t add any vanilla to our dark chocolates as they are full of flavours we want you to enjoy! Like our fruity Madagascar dark chocolate and India dark chocolate with rich stone fruit flavour notes.

You can try our current range of dark chocolates is this collection!